Star Anise and Ginger Spiced Madeleines

By Mieke

Ever since I first had warm Madelines at St. John’s Bread and Wine I have loved these little cakes. So when we were in France this summer I finally got a Madeleine-tin to make my own.

I’ve made what is supposedly the St. John’s recipe from The Book of St. John before, but not knowing which honey to use, they haven’t turned out to expectations. Even if everyone else was happy to eat them.

Update: I have since asked what honey they use at St. John’s and was told it’s Rowse honey. I initially mistook this for rose honey, which doesn’t appear to exist. Unfortunately you can only get Rowse honey in the UK and I am still not sure which kind of Rowse honey they even use. A friend sent me a batch once but I wasn’t in a baking mood and ended up using it for other things. 

The Book of St. John: Henderson, Fergus, Gulliver, Trevor

Funk up your Madelines

I have been intrigued by all the funky alternative Madelines I’ve seen floating around online. So I went looking for star anise Madelines because star anise is one of my favorite flavors. I found something close enough at The Spice House, but switched some of the spices out because I could.

Ginger and star anise spiced Madelines

Dorothy Porker
Super airy and fluffy, mildly spicy and fresh Madelines for any day of the week. Madelines are best eaten fresh, so these are best made for an impromptu tea party or for dessert.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 24 minutes
Course Birthdays, Dessert, Party snack, Sweets, Treat
Cuisine British, French, Fusion
Servings 24 Madelines


  • Oven
  • Small saucepan or microwave and microwave proof bowl
  • Pastry brush
  • Madeline tin, a muffin tin sort of works but isn't ideal
  • Mixing bowls x 2
  • Mixer
  • Metal spoon - this is non-negotiable
  • Bowl covering
  • Wire rack


  • 2/3 c - 150 gr butter unsalted preferred
  • 1 1/2 c - 180 gr all purpose flour
  • 1 t - 5 gr baking powder
  • pinch ground star anise
  • 1 T - 15 gr ginger freshly grated, 1/4 tsp of ground ginger sort of works in a pinch
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3/4 c - 150 gr fine sugar
  • pinch salt omit if using salted butter


  • Preheat an oven to 175° C/ 350° F.
  • Melt 2/3 c - 150 gr of butter in a small saucepan over a low heat or in short bursts in a microwave. Take it off the heat before it starts to bubble. Lightly coat the Madeline-tin with a thin layer of the butter and dust with some flour before placing it in the fridge to set.
  • Now, in a bowl, sift 1 1/3 c - 180 gr of flour, 1 t - 5 gr of baking powder and a pinch of star anise together before adding 1 T - 15 gr of freshly grated ginger and zest of 1 lemon.
  • In a separate bowl, mix together 3 large eggs, 3/4 c - 150 gr of sugar and a pinch of salt for 5 minutes on medium-high, until the mixture has doubled in size and is light and fluffy.
  • Using a metal spoon (use this to avoid beating any air out of the batter) gently fold the dry ingredients into the egg and sugar mixture. Once the dry ingredients have been fully incorporated, slowly pour in the melted butter down the side of the bowl and gently fold that in as well.
  • Cover the bowl and let your dough set and chill for 30 minutes in the fridge.
  • I went a bit overboard with the dough myself, as you can see from the pictures, but gently scoop in about 1 T - 15 gr of dough into each Madeline-shape. Bake for 12 minutes. If you have dough left, be sure to keep it in the fridge as you bake, and be sure to cool, clean and re-butter and dust your tin before you go in for another round of baking.
  • Once done, tip out onto a wire rack to cool or ideally eat straight away while they're still warm and crisp.


Madelines are best kept in a closed tin for up to 3 days. As mentioned however, they are best fresh because they lose that crunchy outer layer as they age. 
Keyword american cakes, baking, cookies, easy bakes, french pastry, madelines

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